Last Modified: 4:25pm 06/02/2023

Visiting a patient

Milton Keynes University Hospital (MKUH) has reintroduced mandatory wearing of face masks in all clinical areas from Monday 19 December. This applies to staff and visitors.

In light of the rising number of flu, respiratory syncytial viruses (RSV) and Covid cases across our communities, we are asking all staff, and visitors to wear a face mask in any areas where clinical care is provided – this includes the Emergency Department, inpatient wards and clinical rooms in our hospital.

The mandatory wearing of face masks applies only in environments where clinical care is provided. In corridors and common areas, such as in our restaurants or shops, staff and visitors are not required to wear a mask, although it is encouraged wherever possible. It will not be a requirement for patients in our wards to wear a face mask.

We understand the negative impact that the wearing of masks has, especially on the communication between staff and patients, however it is an important measure in protecting our staff, our families and our patients.

We also recognise that for some people, wearing a face covering may be difficult due to physical or mental health conditions, and these people will remain exempt.

If you have a hearing impairment, our staff have a range of communication options to ensure that they can communicate effectively with you. This might include visual aids such as writing things down, speech to text apps and sign language.

PLEASE DO NOT VISIT THE HOSPITAL IF YOU ARE EXPERIENCING ANY SYMPTOMS OF ILLNESS, INCLUDING NOROVIRUS, FLU AND COVID-19.

Please note, visiting restrictions may change at short notice due to operational pressures and/or the number of Covid-19 patients in the hospital.

Patients on adult inpatient wards are allowed one visitor between the hours of 1430 and 1930hrs and will not need to book an appointment in advance. This helps us to keep people safe by keeping overall numbers down. In some circumstances more than one visitor will be able to visit at the same time – these will be agreed by the ward manager according to patient and family needs.

Further details for different services can be found below:

Adult inpatient wards

  • One visitor per patient at any one time between the hours of 1430 and 1930hrs on adult inpatient unless there are other specific agreements in place with the ward. Visitors are not required to book a visit in advance.
  • Visiting outside these hours must be agreed with the Ward Manager or Nurse in Charge prior to any visit. Exceptions will be made based on the individual needs of the patient. In exceptional circumstance, such as end of life or patients that have dementia or require carer support (e.g John’s Campaign), more than one visitor can be requested for authorisation by the Matron in-hours and the Clinical Site Team out-of-hours.
  • NO visitors for patients who have been required to isolate due to a certain type of surgical procedure (green elective pathway) unless otherwise agreed by staff in advance.

Please note, wards with patients who are on a ward where there is Covid-19 will not be permitted any visitors. You will be made aware of this by the nurse-in-charge. 

ED and outpatients

  • Patients attending ED can have a maximum of one relative with them at any one time.
  • In the Outpatient Department and Clinics patients, can be accompanied by one visitor at all times.

Maternity and Paediatrics

  • In all Maternity wards, two birth partners are able to visit and/or accompany a patient. The visiting hours for Ward 9 are from 08:00 am and 10:00 pm. Partners no longer require an LFT if they are asymptomatic. Siblings can visit the ward between 1600 – 1800 daily.
  • In the Neonatal Unit, two parent(s)/carer(s) are able to visit per baby
  • In all Paediatric wards, two parent(s)/carer(s) are able to visit per child

When visiting the Hospital all visitors must:

  • Wear a face mask (when in a clinical setting)
  • Use hand gel when entering any clinical area or wash their hands.
  • Only visit the area where the patient is being cared for.
  • Please DO NOT bring flowers into the hospital for infection control reasons.
  • Please DO NOT eat or drink at the bedside for infection control reasons.

In some cases, patients who have an infectious condition, or who may need further protection from infection, may be moved into a side room or into a specific ward area to manage that infection or risk. Visitors must ask nursing staff about any other precautions needed when visiting or if there are additional restrictions to visiting.

Ward areas have protected mealtimes and visitors may be asked to leave so the patients can eat without interruption unless otherwise agreed in specific circumstances (eg John’s Campaign).

Visitors MUST NOT visit if they have:

  • Any symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • Recently tested positive for COVID-19, or are waiting for a test result
  • Respiratory symptoms, diarrhoea or vomiting

If a visitor thinks they have an infectious illness, they should contact the ward or department before visiting.